April 5, 2021
“Chunking” is a term coined by psychologist George Miller to describe our short-term memory’s ability to hold and process information. This video provides an introduction.
Please add your own ideas for chunking and/or video presentation to the Open Space doc.
Referenced in This Video:
- Miller, G. A. (1994). The magical number seven, plus or minus two: Some limits on our capacity for processing information. Psychological Review, 101(2), 343–352.
- Studies suggest our short-term memory can hold an average of four chunks of information at once.
- Rouder, J. N., Morey, R. D., Cowan, N., Zwilling, C. E., Morey, C. C., & Pratte, M. S. (2008). An assessment of fixed-capacity models of visual working memory. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 105(16), 5975-5979.
Ideas for video presentations:
- Include a rundown of topics at the start of the video
- Add timestamps in the video description if possible
- In addition to chunking your topics, consider chunking the video itself:
- Add digital transitions if you know how (if you have a Mac, iMovie makes this easy)
- Break up the lecture-nature of the video with:
- Stretch breaks
- Hidden information
- Scene changes
- Moments where your face is not on screen
- Audio/visual surprises/disruptions (change volume level or appearance, add a dramatic pause, emphasize words, task challenges, Easter eggs, etc.)
- Use hand gestures and facial expressions to make the visual aspect of your video more engaging
- Shorter is better – if you have to make a long video, add disruptions.
- Remember, you don’t need to fill all your class time with a video. Consider Open Educational Resources (pre-existing videos, podcasts, etc.), reflection questions, task challenges, discussion, etc.